The Torah, Bill of Principles: What does HaShem, Master of the Universe Commands each and every Human Being in every country?
The Bill of Rights
The Bill of Rights is the first 7 Commandments to the Torah’s Constitution for Humanity. It spells out every person’s duties and rights in every country, in relation to Israel. It guarantees divine and civil rights and obligations to the individual— like responsibility of speech (Bircat HaShem), right to equanimity in economical transactions and spiritual development in the context of the True Unity of the G-d of Israel.
It sets rules for due process of law and reserves all powers not delegated to the National Government to the people or the countries. And it specifies that “the enumeration in the Torah’s Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.”
The First Commandment: To Believe in the One True God, The God of Israel.
Prohibition of Idolatry
Every person should believe in the existence of the one and only Creator of the world. He creates the world and every person and knows all our actions and thoughts. He observes them and judges each person according to his deeds. He is the one and only G-d whom we must worship and to whom we should pray. The practical meaning of this commandment is a complete prohibition to bow down or worship idols of any kind or to believe in another god or any created entity or force.
The Second Commandment: To Honor God
Prohibition against blaspheming
Each person has to give respect to the Creator of the world, who granted him life and the world to live in. G-d gave to man the wonderful and unique capacity of speech. Its power to build the world in which we live in is infinite. When we use it to recognize the Divine Providence in our life we can actually relate to God. To think, speak and act in the world of truth we have to base ourselves upon the Divine criteria of truth. It allows us true free choice. The practical meaning of this commandment is the prohibition to curse G-d or call Him any derogatory or disrespectful name.
The Third Commandment: The Respect for Human Life
Prohibition of murder
Man is created in the “image” of God. Man’s life is a holy gift, which no one has the permission to take away from him. One should respect and encourage the continuation of mankind. One who kills a soul it is considered as though he has murdered the entire world and harmed the Creator in whose image he was created. The practical meaning of this commandment is a complete prohibition to kill any human being, including a fetus in its mother’s womb.
The Fourth Commandment: The Respect for Marriage
Prohibition of adultery
God created firstly the man and the woman as one unit and then divided them into two separate entities, which are in need of each other in order to reach completeness. Married life and its laws are, therefore, the basis for the existence of mankind and the completeness of the family and community. This comes into expression also in keeping values of modesty and discreetness in matters of marital relationship. The practical meaning of this commandment is the prohibition of incest and adultery. This includes the prohibition of sexual relations between relatives of the first degree, between a married woman and another man, between two males or with animals.
The Fifth Commandment: The Respect for Others Property
Prohibition of theft
God has granted each person the ownership over his money and possessions, and no one is permitted to take them away from him. This includes also the prohibition of holdover payment, the prohibition to kidnap a person, young or old. The practical meaning of this commandment is a strict prohibition of stealing or robbery or any kind of taking a possession away from one’s disposal by force or by fraud or in any other illegal way. Sensitivity to another person’s money or property inspires us also to do acts of charity and kindness.
The Sixth Commandment: The Respect for All Living Creatures
Prohibition to eat part cut from a living creature
God created living creatures in the world, and we must respect their existence. As opposed to the flora, which is renewed continuously, harm to animals is irreversible. Although the Torah is not negating to eating meat, it sets strict limits to the ability of a person to use animals for his needs. This commandment, which obliges us not to be indifferent even to the suffering of an animal, enhances also our obligation to be aware of another person’s sorrow, not to hurt him and to help him come out of his stress. The practical meaning of this commandment is the prohibition of eating a limb or tearing out a limb taken from an animal while it is still alive.
The Seventh Commandment: The Respect for Law & Order
Appointment of judges and pursue of Justice
In order that all the above laws will be properly observed, courts of justice should be established in every city (or zone), with judges, who will make decisions with regard these commandments and have the authority to punish those who transgress them. Every person who has an argument will be able to go to these appointed judges and obey their judgment.
Fundamental Faith Principles According to Torah
1. The basic foundation and the first principle of faith is to know that there is a Primary Being who brought all existence into being. All of the entities in the spiritual and physical realms come into existence only from the truth of His Being. 2. This Being is the God of the universe and the Master of the entire earth. He controls the spheres and the entire universe with infinite and unbounded power that continues without interruption. 3. This God is one, and only can be one, and not two or more. He is one with a complete unification that surpasses any of the types of unity that are part of the created realms; He is not one in the manner of a category that includes multiple individual entities, nor one in the manner of a body that is divided into portions or dimensions. 4. Rather, He is completely unified, and there exists no unity similar to His within the created realms. If there were multiple gods, they would be limited to some type of spiritual body and form, because similar but distinct entities coexisting on the same level are separated from each other through limitations that are associated with body and form. If God were to have body and form, He would be limited and defined, because it is impossible for there to be a body which has no limitation. Everything that has limitation and definition, by virtue of its body, also has a limited and bounded power. God’s ability and power have no limitation or boundary, so therefore His power cannot be the power of a body. And since He does not have a body or any form, He cannot be affected by any circumstances that can affect a body, as for example the effects of being separate from another entity. Thus it is impossible for Him to be anything other than one. 4. Just as His Existence is of an entirely different nature than that of the created beings, so too, His Truth is incomparable to the truth of the created beings. For all the created beings require Him, and He, blessed be He, does not require them. Therefore, the truth of His Being does not resemble the truth of any of their beings. This is implied by the words of the prophet: “God your Lord is true” – i.e., He alone is true, and no other entity possesses truth that compares to His Truth. This is what is meant by the Torah’s statement: “There is nothing else aside from Him” – i.e., aside from Him, there is no true existence.
Knowing this fundamental principle, the existence of God, blessed be He, was included in the commandment and the warning that prohibited idolatry to Adam the first man and all his descendants. The obligation of this knowledge is not only to hear and understand this precept once and to agree and set it in one’s heart. Rather it is a continuous obligation for every person to think about and contemplate the existence of the Master of the universe and His greatness, in order to set the knowledge of God strongly in his heart and mind. One should constantly reflect upon this, as the righteous King David wrote, “I place God before me always; because He is at my right hand I shall not falter.”
General Rule for Every Person
The general rule is that it is obligatory for every person to learn the Seven Commandments that he is commanded to do, and he should learn them very well, to know what is permitted and prohibited for him. He is permitted to learn them even in a way of “delving into them,” meaning deeply learning to understand the reasons and the details within the Noahide Code.
The Prohibition Against Making a New Religion
Moses was also commanded by God to to explain and guide all nations of the world to accept the Seven Noahide Commandments as they had been commanded, and anyone who does not accept them is liable. This commandment to Moses to explain and guide all the nations of the world to accept the seven Noahide precepts is not incumbent merely on the Jews, but also upon all the nations of the world; anyone who has the power to to explain and guide others to act in the correct way is obligated to do so. If there is a court or government that has the authority, they must establish these seven commandments as an order and statute, and if an individual has the ability to persuasively explain to Gentiles about their obligation, he is required to do so from this commandment to Moses. The general rule is that it is forbidden for a Gentile (an individual, and certainly a community which observes the Noahide Code) to add precepts from another religion or create a commandment based on his own decision. If he wants, he can seek proper conversion to become a Jew in all respects, or he can remain observant of the Noahide Code, without adding to or subtracting from the Noahide Commandments that he observes. A Gentile who delves deeply into other areas of Torah is liable, and should only be deeply involved in study of the Noahide Code in which he was commanded.
What is the G-dly Responsibility Every Person Has?
There are some essential aspects of the Seven Noahide Commandments that carry liability to capital punishment if they are transgressed, as a Divine decree. “Their warning is considered their liability to death,” meaning that as soon as an adult becomes aware that one of these particular actions is prohibited, from that point on, if he willfully transgresses it, he will become liable to death in the judgment of God. (Therefore it will be explained later, in the section for each Noahide commandment, which exact actions make one liable to death.) There are also many prohibitions in the Noahide Code which are not explicitly warned about, and one is not liable to death for transgressing them, as will be explained. Both men and women are equally obligated to keep these commandments, and receive punishment from a Torah-based court if they are convicted of transgressing them. A person not liable to death unless he willfully commits one of the actions that is a capital sin. However, if he errs without intention to transgress, then he is not liable (for example, a man who enters a dark room and has relations with his neighbor’s wife, thinking that she is his wife or an unmarried woman, or one who eats a limb that was severed from a living animal, while mistakenly thinking that the animal had been killed). However, if he errs in judging his known action as permissible, this is not considered as erring without intention. Rather, it is close to being a willful sin and he is liable, since he should have learned the major stringencies of the Seven Noahide Commandments and failed to do so (for example, one who knows that he is having relations with his neighbor’s wife but thinks that she is permitted to him, and he does not know the prohibition against adultery, or one who knowingly eats meat that was severed from a living animal, but he does not know that it is forbidden). Likewise, if he erred because he did not check well enough to know if his action would make him liable or not, this is not considered erring without intention. Rather it is close to a willful sin, since he should have checked and he did not. (For example, one who knows the prohibition against adultery, but he had relations for the sake of marriage without knowing that the woman was already married to another man. He should have checked carefully to find out if she was married or single, before having marital relations with her.) It appears that if a person errs in judging his known action as permissible, he is only liable for the transgression if he should have learned that it was forbidden, as would be the case if his community as a whole knows the Seven Noahide Commandments. But in areas or times in which a community does not know some of these commandments at all, one cannot say that he should have learned them, for it was not possible, and therefore he is not liable for them. Rather, a person should first be taught and warned about the Noahide Code, and only afterwards is he responsible for his actions, in regard to the prohibitions against serving idols, forbidden relations, and eating meat that was severed from a living animal. However, for the prohibitions against murder and stealing, and for the commandment to establish courts of justice, which are all logically binding, there is no exemption for not knowing that these are forbidden. It also appears that there is no “erring” in regard to blasphemy. Once one knows that there is a God, and he knows His Name, it is logically clear that it is forbidden to curse God. (But if one does not know about God at all, or does not understand what he is saying – in Hebrew or other languages – his curse is not regarded as blasphemy).